Phil Erwin's Blog Site

City of Dallas

Building Inspection Division/Development Services Department

Storm Damage Assistance - AgriLife Extension Office

Dallas City Arborist web link

“Examine each question in terms of what is ethically and aesthetically right, as well as what is economically expedient. A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.” - Aldo Leopold

The City of Dallas landscape zoning ordinance originated on March 1, 1986 under Chapter 51. On April 25, 1990, the City Council passed a resolution 'to support the protection and preservation of trees across the city.' The amended current version of the landscape ordinance under Chapter 51A, attached to a new tree preservation ordinance, became effective on May 25, 1994. There have been a few amendments to the three divisions of Article X (General, Landscape, and Tree Preservation, Removal and Replacement) in the years since its inception. On June 27, 2018, the Dallas City Council unanimously approved the Article X Landscaping and Urban Forest Conservation ordinances. It is in effect as of July 2, 2018.

The demonstration of the ordinance here is intended solely for educational purposes. This is not an official city website. Through this review of ordinances, the intent is to assist the reader in understanding existing city code as well as to present different concepts and processes. Comments and discussions, or the manner of display of the city ordinance presented in these pages, in no way represent the official position of the City of Dallas or of the opinion of the director, the building official, or the City of Dallas.

Happy reading.

Sites to help locate a private certified arborist and tree service in the DFW area.

Amendments effective as of July 2, 2018!

The links and text provided below are a representation of the final approved Landscape and Urban Forest Conservation ordinance passed by the City Council on June 27, 2018. Comments and directions on this and associated web pages are provided for informational purposes to help guide citizens and customers in using the regulations. Any additional direction or statements should not be considered official city policy or guidelines without confirmation by the Chief Arborist. Different sites have varied conditions which may require further analysis. Use the site wisely and ask questions if an item is not clear. Arborists are at SDCArborist@dallascityhall.com.


Printable Document

2018 REVISED TREE MITIGATION STANDARDS (tree classification and fee structure for Reforestation Fund)

Article X Chapter 51A of the Dallas Development Code after July 1, 2018.

"New Testament"

10.100. General.

10.101. Definitions

10.102. Purpose

10.103. Acceptable Plant Materials

See List of Arborist Recommended Shrubs for potential uses (NOT official). Contact city arborist for selections.

10.104. Soil and Planting Area Requirements

10.105. Measurements

10.106. Irrigation Requirements

10.107. Reserved

10.108. General Maintenance

10.109. Landscape and Tree Manual

10.110. Special Exceptions

10.120. Landscaping.

10.121. Application of Division

10.122. Artificial Lots

10.123. Landscape Plan Submission

10.124. Landscape Plan Review

10.125 (a). Mandatory Landscaping Requirements - SF and Duplex uses

10.125 (b). Mandatory Landscaping Requirements - Other uses

10.126. Landscape Design Options

10.127. When Landscaping Must Be Completed

10.128. Enforcement By Building Official

10.130. Urban Forest Conservation.

10.131. Application of Division

10.131.1. Intent

10.131.2. Planned Development Districts

10.132. Tree Removal Applications

10.133. Historic Trees

10.133.1 Transplanted Trees

10.134. Replacement Of Removed Or Seriously Injured Trees

10.135. Alternative Methods Of Compliance with Tree Replacement Requirements

10.136. Conservation and Maintenance of Protected Trees During Construction Or Other Disturbance

10.137. Violation Of This Division

10.138. Appeals

10.139. Fines

10.140. Criminal Responsibility, and Defenses To Prosecution

Additional related city ordinances

Go to DallasCityAttorney.com for the full list of Planned Developments, Form District regulations, and other ordinances.

Article XIII Landscape Review Checklist

Conservation Easements (also, Community Unit Development)

Community Gardens

Screening and Off-Street Parking Regulations

The Great Trinity Forest Management Plan


PD 225 - State-Thomas Special Purpose District

PD 298 - Bryan Area Special Purpose District

PD 357 - Farmers Market Special Purpose District

PD 366 - Buckner Boulevard Special Purpose District - has been amended by Council

PD 468 - Oak Cliff Gateway Special Purpose District

PD 498 - Harry Hines Corridor Special Purpose District

PD 521 - Mountain Creek Planned Development District

PD 533, 534, 535 C.F. Hawn Freeway Special Purpose Districts

PD 621 - Old Trinity and Design District Special Purpose District

PD 758 - Lake Highlands Town Center

PD 761 - The Dallas Logistics Port Special Purpose District

PD 784 - Trinity River Corridor Special Purpose District

PD 811 - Pinnacle Park Planned Development AMENDED

PD 830 - Bishop/Davis Planned Development

Water Conservation Ordinance

Irrigation Ordinance

Irrigation Contractor Registration

Amended Green Building ordinance (9/26/12)

Green Building site - Building Inspection

Phase 2 in effect October 1, 2013

City of Dallas Arborist Districts - Phil Erwin, Chief Arborist (Mgr. II)

Offices - 320 E Jefferson Blvd, Room 105, Dallas, TX 75203

SW - Clay Walker

SE - Tina Standeford

NW - Jessie Farris

NE - Preston Willms

Q Team Arborists, Room 204




City of Dallas

Contractor Registration Form

Contractor information for landscapers (other than irrigation) and tree services or demolition companies who work to service or remove trees in Dallas.

Section 1101

DEMOLITION CONTRACTOR means a person engaged in the business of site preparation, such as excavating and grading, demolition of buildings and other structures, earth moving, and land clearing for all types of sites (e.g., building, nonbuilding, mining). This includes blasting, building demolition, foundation digging (i.e., excavation), concrete breaking and cutting for demolition, foundation drilling, and trenching.

LANDSCAPE CONTRACTOR means a person that is engaged in the business of constructing, maintaining, repairing, installing, or subcontracting the development of landscape systems and facilities. A landscape contractor prepares and grades plots and areas of land for the installation of any architectural, horticultural, and decorative treatment or arrangement.

TREE SERVICE CONTRACTOR means a person engaged in the business of tree service work that includes cutting, trimming, pruning, removing, grinding, or otherwise modifying established trees in accordance with the ANSI A300 Standard Practice for Trees, Shrubs, and Other Woody Plant Maintenance and the ANSI Z-133.1 Safety Standards. (Ord. 28096)

1102.1 General. A contractor listed in Section 1101 who is not registered by the city may not obtain any permit required by this chapter for work defined in Section 1101. (Ord. 28096) [$120 fee. Application and payment in Room 118, OCMC]

1103.1 General. To register with the city as a contractor listed in Section 1101 to perform work described in Section 1101, a person shall apply to the building inspection division in writing on forms furnished for that purpose. The contractor may apply in person or send an agent to apply on behalf of the contractor.

1103.2 Established place of business. Each applicant for registration shall maintain an established place of business at a permanent location. If the established place of business is within the city, a certificate of occupancy must be secured as required in the Dallas Development Code. (Ord. 28096)

1106.1 Suspension or revocation. The building official shall suspend or revoke a certificate of registration granted under this subchapter if the building official finds the contractor or the contractor’s authorized agent:

1. Obtains a certificate of registration or permit by the use of fraud or deceit;

2. Intentionally violates a provision of this chapter; or

3. Exhibits incompetency or commits gross negligence or misconduct in the performance of construction work within the city. (Ord. 28096)

Dallas Water Utilities